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Dish beats profit estimates, expects more subscriber losses


By Sheila Dang and Akanksha Rana

(Reuters) - Network Corp beat Wall Street estimates for quarterly profit on Wednesday, as the U.S. provider benefited from lower programming costs due to a blackout of channels.

Shares of were up 1 percent to $31.84 in afternoon trading.

shed a net 367,000 during the third quarter, much higher than a consensus estimate of 232,000 net customer losses, according to research firm

Customers who cancelled their due to the blackout accounted for roughly half of the subscriber losses, said during a conference call with analysts.

Last week, premium channel went dark on Dish after a disagreement over a new distribution deal with owner Inc .

said during the call the dispute hinged on requiring Dish to pay based on a minimum number of subscribers.

"That would be malpractice," Ergen said. "There's no company that would sign up to a deal like that."

Dish said it expects to lose subscribers next quarter due to the blackout but did not know how big the impact will be.

won a court battle in June to close its acquisition of Time Warner, then the owner of HBO, and will head back to court next month as the appeals the deal approval. The department had argued the merger would result in higher prices for other pay-TV companies.

Dish, which has been stockpiling licenses for wireless spectrum, or airwaves that carry data, said it was on track to build an Internet of Things wireless network, and it is placing antennas on towers this year.

The company's service added just 26,000 subscribers during the quarter, below expectations of 71,000 additions, according to

Dish has tried to lure viewers to its $25-per-month as it battles in its services, with audiences shifting to services like .

Net income attributable to Dish rose to $432 million, or 82 cents per share, in the third quarter ended Sept. 30 from $297 million, or 57 cents per share, in the year-ago quarter.

Revenue fell to $3.40 billion from $3.58 billion in the prior-year quarter. Analysts had expected the company to report revenue of $3.397 billion, according to Refinitiv data.

(Reporting by in Bengaluru and in New York; editing by and Cynthia Osterman)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, November 08 2018. 00:35 IST